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By Rajarshi Majumdar
Aug 23, 2014
Glenn Maxwell smashed a quick-fire 93 runs from 46 balls and Mitchell Marsh‘s innings of 89 runs helped Australia to set a daunting target of 350 runs against Zimbabwe in the first One-Day International (ODI) of the tri-series at Harare Sports Club. Australia started off slowly as the Zimbabwean bowlers gave nothing away. And ever since then, the bowlers were not allowed to settle down. The Zimbabwean skipper Elton Chigumbura was forced to try different things at a regular intervals but nothing worked for him.
Although Australia made a slow start to their innings but Aaron Finch and Brad Haddin really took on the bowlers. The first wicket partnership was of 98 runs until Haddin played himself down. Mitchell Marsh came out to bat and things really slowed down for them. Finch was not getting much of the strike. And eventually got himself out. He played well for his innings of 67 runs from 79 balls. In his innings, he hit three huge sixes and five boundaries.
The Australian skipper George Bailey got himself out rather cheaply. He tried to hit one over the long-on and got the edge was caught off the bowling of Sean Williams. The moment Marsh completed his maiden half-century, he opened his arms. Glenn Maxwell joined the party too. He hit five humongous sixes and nine boundaries in his innings. It looked like he will make the record of scoring the fastest century by an Australian which could have come in 48 balls but unfortunately he was caught in the deep. Australia scored 147 runs in their last 10 overs.
The Zimbabwean bowlers bowled well initially and the mid-innings overs. But they were all over the place while Marsh and Maxwell launched an attack on them. Too many length balls were easily converted into sixes by these Aussie batsmen. Australian batsmen has hit 15 sixes in all in this innings. Prosper Utseya was the pick of the bowlers. He gave away only 44 runs in his 10 overs and unfortunately he did not get a wicket. All the other bowlers were taken apart by Australia.
Zimbabwe will really have to bat well in order to chase down this huge total. This is Australia’s highest total against Zimbabwe in ODIs. It will not be easy against the likes of Mitchell Johnson, Mitchell Starc, James Faulkner and Kane Richardson.
Australia 350 for 6 in 50 overs (Aaron Finch 67, Mitchell Marsh 89, Glenn Maxwell 93; Tendai Chatara 2 for 77, Sean Williams 1 for 59) vs Zimbabwe.
(Rajarshi Majumdar is a reporter at CricketCountry. He played cricket for all age levels under the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) for over 12 years. Apart from cricket he is an avid follower of football, supports Manchester United and a foodie at heart.)
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